Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. An extremely hard, highly refractive crystalline form of carbon that is usually colorless and is used as a gemstone and in abrasives, cutting tools, and other applications.
  • n. A piece of jewelry containing such a gemstone.
  • n. A figure with four equal sides forming two inner obtuse angles and two inner acute angles; a rhombus or lozenge.
  • n. Games A red, lozenge-shaped figure on certain playing cards.
  • n. Games A playing card with this figure.
  • n. Games The suit of cards represented by this figure.
  • n. Baseball An infield.
  • n. Baseball The whole playing field.
  • adj. Of or relating to a 60th or 75th anniversary.
  • transitive v. To adorn with or as if with diamonds.
  • idiom diamond in the rough One having exceptionally good qualities or the potential for greatness but lacking polish and refinement.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A glimmering glass-like mineral that is an allotrope of carbon in which each atom is surrounded by four others in the form of a tetrahedron.
  • n. A gemstone made from this mineral.
  • n. A ring containing a diamond.
  • n. A very pale blue color/colour.
  • n. Something that resembles a diamond.
  • n. A rhombus, especially when oriented so that its longer axis is vertical.
  • n. The polyiamond made up of two triangles.
  • n. The entire field of play used in the game.
  • n. The infield of a baseball field.
  • n. A card of the diamonds suit.
  • adj. made of, or containing diamond, a diamond or diamonds.
  • adj. of, relating to, or being a sixtieth anniversary.
  • adj. of, relating to, or being a seventy-fifth anniversary.
  • v. to adorn with or as if with diamonds

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A precious stone or gem excelling in brilliancy and beautiful play of prismatic colors, and remarkable for extreme hardness.
  • n. A geometrical figure, consisting of four equal straight lines, and having two of the interior angles acute and two obtuse; a rhombus; a lozenge.
  • n. One of a suit of playing cards, stamped with the figure of a diamond.
  • n. A pointed projection, like a four-sided pyramid, used for ornament in lines or groups.
  • n. The infield; the square space, 90 feet on a side, having the bases at its angles.
  • n. The smallest kind of type in English printing, except that called brilliant, which is seldom seen.
  • adj. Resembling a diamond; made of, or abounding in, diamonds

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. Adamant; steel, or some imaginary substance of extreme hardness or impenetrability.
  • n. A precious stone, distinguished from all others by being combustible and by its extreme hardness, as well as by its superior refractive and dispersive power.
  • n. A geometrical figure bounded by four equal straight lines forming two acute and two obtuse angles; a rhomb; a lozenge; specifically, such a figure printed in red on a playing-card.
  • n. A playing-card stamped with one or more red lozenge-shaped figures.
  • n. A tool armed with a diamond, used for cutting glass.
  • n. In base-ball, the square space inclosed within the four bases.
  • n. In heraldry, the tincture black in blazoning by means of precious stones.
  • n. The smallest size of printing-type in common use; a size smaller than pearl. Brilliant, very rarely used, is the only regular size below it.
  • n. This line is printed in diamond.
  • n. Mineral coal, as consisting, like diamonds, of carbon.
  • Resembling a diamond; consisting of diamonds; set with a diamond or diamonds: as, a diamond luster; a diamond necklace; a diamond ring.
  • Lozenge-shaped; rhombic: as, diamond window-panes.
  • Having rhomboid figures or markings: as, the diamond rattlesnake.
  • To set or decorate with diamonds.
  • n.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. the area of a baseball field that is enclosed by 3 bases and home plate
  • n. a playing card in the minor suit that has one or more red rhombuses on it
  • n. a transparent piece of diamond that has been cut and polished and is valued as a precious gem
  • n. the baseball playing field
  • n. a parallelogram with four equal sides; an oblique-angled equilateral parallelogram
  • n. very hard native crystalline carbon valued as a gem

Etymologies

Middle English diamaunt, from Old French diamant, from Medieval Latin diamās-, diamant-, alteration of Latin adamās; see adamant.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Old French diamant, from Late Latin diamas, from Latin adamas, from Ancient Greek ἀδάμας (adámas, "invincible, untamed; hard substance"), from ἀ- (a-, "un-") + δαμάζω (damázo, "to overpower, tame, conquer"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • -- The real identity of the two words explains Milton’s use of ‘diamond’ in _Paradise Lost_, b. 7; and also in that sublime passage in his _Apology for Smectymnuus_: “Then zeal, whose substance is ethereal, arming in complete _diamond_”.

    English Past and Present

  • I didn't know that the word diamond comes from the Greek word "Adamas" which means unconquerable.

    Bisaya Bloggers

  • Dayzatari say that diamonds are the thoughts of stars, fallen to earth, and the Pelorian name for diamond translates as "starthought."

    The Lore of Gloranthan Gems and Near-Gems by Martin R. Crim Part II

  • Their trip to the crystal leads to the discovery that the diamond is actually hollow and harbors an alternate Earth.

    REVIEW: The Crystal Cosmos by Rhys Hughes

  • I'll tell you, that very first shot, we got an amazing, amazing photo of what they call the diamond ring.

    CNN Transcript Jul 22, 2009

  • If you wait another five minutes on this tape, you'll see what we call the diamond ring.

    CNN Transcript Aug 1, 2008

  • These patrol men should have had a lot more training now, been able to gone into the school, been able to move into what we call a diamond formation, where the actual patrol officers stack up in three-man teams and begin a methodical search of the entire building going directly to the threat, not actually waiting outside the school which is what we saw in Columbine.

    CNN Transcript Apr 16, 2007

  • Since those days Mr. Menpes has continued to draw from photographs, and -- the base of his artistic education being deficient from the first -- the result of his long abstention from Nature is apparent, even to the least critical, in the some hundred and seventy paintings, etchings, and what he calls diamond-points on ivory, on exhibition at

    Modern Painting

  • Mr Cameron's inner team is settled in what he calls a diamond formation, with Andy Coulson, the Essex man, on the right wing, his ideas guru Steve Hilton providing the empathy and George Osborne providing the unshakeable will to win.

    Telegraph.co.uk: news, business, sport, the Daily Telegraph newspaper, Sunday Telegraph

  • In November the diamond is getting a new temporary setting, chosen by the public through an online contest.

    Hope Diamond gets a Hollywood voice

Comments

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  • Sometimes liable can sound like "lye-bull" - especially, of course, when it follows reckon in a sentence such as "I reckon he's liable to stick around these here parts."

    June 8, 2010

  • In those the a's seem to create a second vowel (schwa, really) with the l's. I guess one could say that the schwa comes from the l's alone (compare homonyms vile and file) or that they aren't really disyllabic, but I don't think I would agree with either of those assertions.

    June 7, 2010

  • Long i, monosyllabic, is represented here by -ia-. I can't think of any other words that do the same. Can anybody?

    June 7, 2010

  • 'I suppose it is one of Nature's positive laws, that even diamond rings, worn a while, cease to raise that glow in a lady's bosom which first possession excited.'
    'I think,' said Mrs. Sumelin, 'it is not very polite to compare a lady to a diamond ring.'
    —Robert Bage, 1796, Hermsprong

    We have probably all heard that it was a marketing campaign by De Beers in the early 1900s that made diamonds the ubiquitous engagement gift; so this quotation is a salutary antidote to thinking they must have been little used before then.

    March 21, 2009

  • "She is very honest, and will be as hard to cut as a rough diamond." - 'A Wife for a Month', John Fletcher, 1624.

    December 11, 2007

  • WordNet is a bit different than a normal dictionary. Diamond has a general physical definition, which we all know. The term diamond is typically used to describe a piece of diamond mounted on some sort jewelry. This is the most commonly used, which is why it is the first definition WordNet gives.

    Looking at the WordNet entry should be illustrative.

    November 8, 2007

  • If it isn't a federal offense, it darn well should be. Hmph.

    Skipvia, you're not alone. If you had wondered what they were for, you'd be an odd bird.

    Wait....

    November 8, 2007

  • Reesetee: That's exactly what I did, and there are diamonds all over it. How come I never even wondered what those were for?

    Don't answer that...

    November 8, 2007

  • What's up with the "official" definition up there, using the word itself in the definition? Isn't that a federal offense?!

    Also... this is really cool. I wonder why they named it "diamond" and not, say, "hayrick"?

    November 8, 2007

  • Isn't it amazing? I've been dying to go home and look at my tape measure!

    November 8, 2007

  • I...I...holy crapple, reesetee. There is just no end to the wonders of this list.

    November 8, 2007

  • A mostly unnoticed marking on many tape measures in the United States, the diamond marks a distance unit of exactly 8/5 feet (19.2 inches or 48.768 centimeters). The marking is used by carpenters to place 5 studs, floor joists, etc., within a distance of 8 feet.

    November 8, 2007